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Two Navies in Sihanoukville Ports of Call

Two ships from the Indian navy docked in Sihanoukville Monday, for a five-day port of call, a defense official said.

The visit will coincide with the arrival of a battleship from the French navy, the Depuy de Lome, which is scheduled to arrive Thursday.

The docking of India's 180-meter INS Jyoti and the 92-meter INS Kora will be to strengthen ties between the navies of both countries, Defense Minister Tea Banh said.

The official naval visits follow ports of call by the US navy, as well as the donation of ships by China.

"They are coming just to exchange experiences and for cooperation," he said. "It's a normal visit and nothing else."

The Indian navy will work with the Cambodian navy, he said, without giving details.

An Indian embassy official told VOA Khmer that the ships were visiting Cambodia as they do in other countries, but he referred detailed questions to the commanders of the ships.

In 2006, officials said the Indian navy discussed specific areas of cooperation with Cambodia, including training, maintenance and repairs of artillery, tanks, trucks and demining equipment.